MATT’S TOP FIVE TIPS
Liquid or powder developers
Film developers come in liquid and powder form. For first-time users I would recommend a liquid developer, as they are very easy to mix and use. Powder developers are typically more economical to use and are perfect for more confident or experienced users.
Label the cylinders
It is best to prepare all your chemicals in advance for efficient processing. It is worth investing in three sets of measuring cylinders and label them ‘Dev’, ‘Stop’ and ‘Fix’ to avoid contamination. If you have to reuse the same cylinder, wash it thoroughly between chemicals.
If you are working in a cold area then you will need to keep your prepared solutions at the correct temperature until you need to use them. To do this you can stand them in a tray or bowl of water that is a couple of degrees warmer than your working temperature.
Loading the film
The trickiest part of processing film is loading it onto the spiral in complete darkness. Practise doing this in the light with old or wasted film. Once you have mastered this, then try doing it with your eyes closed before attempting it in the dark with real film.
Some chemicals can be reused – please check the manufacturer’s guidelines on this. You will need suitable storage containers, and of course, like all chemicals these will need to be kept out of reach of young children. Ensure you label your containers too for future use.